In The Know is a daily synopsis of Oklahoma policy-related news and blogs. Inclusion of a story does not necessarily mean endorsement by the Oklahoma Policy Institute. E-mail your suggestions for In The Know items to email@example.com. You can sign up here to receive In The Know by e-mail.
Today you should know that Gov. Mary Fallin is expected to oust four members to the state Education Board today after a new law takes effect allowing her to replace board members “at will.” Two fights erupting within a week at the Tecumseh juvenile correctional center have prompted a special meeting to discuss allowing use of armed security personnel, Tasers, pepper spray and increased mechanical restraints on juveniles. More than $150 million has been spent so far and millions more are needed to clean up the Tar Creek Superfund site, which has been blamed for dumping lead and other dangerous pollutants in the Grand Lake watershed.
With state leaders pushing to eliminate the state’s income tax, the OK Policy Blog presents three alternative reforms that modernize the tax system and do a better job of making Oklahoma prosperous and competitive with other states. Following a study to examine state obligations, Rep. Joe Dorman expressed concern that legislators do not understand the full extent of state debts and obligations [Journal Record subscriber only link] to make sure they are paid. A federal judge found the Cherokee Nation in contempt of court for missing a deadline to notify freedmen descendants that they could vote in a special election for the Principal Chief.
House Speaker Kris Steele has named Rep. Charles Ortega as co-chairman of the Joint Immigration Reform Committee. Ortega replaces Rep. George Faught who stepped down to run for U.S. Rep. Dan Boren’s Congressional seat. Despite Texas’s decision to end the practice, Oklahoma will continue offering last meals to death row inmates. OETA’s Oklahoma Forum featured a half-hour discussion of tax incentives with Rep. David Dank and two journalists who have covered the issue.
Today’s Number of the Day is the percentage of ACT-tested high school graduates in Oklahoma who were prepared for college-level course work in math in 2010. In today’s Policy Note, KWGS interviews Dr. John E. McDonough, a professor at the Harvard School of Public Health, to separate myths from the facts about the new health care law.
continue reading In The Know: Governor could oust Education Board members